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Genworth Warns Of $92-$112 Million Loss On Mortgage-Insurer Charge

By Erik Holm Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES NEW YORK -(Dow Jones)- Genworth Financial Inc. (GNW) warned Wednesday that it will report a second-quarter loss of $92 million to $112 million as it again bolsters reserves at its troubled mortgage-insurance unit. Shares fell 10% to $8.52 in after-hours trading after the company announced the loss. Genworth said it would add about $300 million to reserves at its U.S. mortgage insurer, which has lost more than $1.5 billion since the start of 2008 because of policies it sold when the housing bubble was headed toward its peak. The company said it would have an operating loss of $70 million to $90 million, or a loss of 14 cents to 18 cents per share. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters has expected an operating profit of 25 cents. The company's operating profit, a measure that excludes some investment results, was $118 million, or 24 cents a share, in last year's second quarter. Genworth said the mortgage reserves will be bolstered using common stock from its Canadian mortgage-insurance operation. The company had previously sold some of the shares in the Canadian operation to raise funds as it fought to recover from the 2008 financial crisis. Mortgage insurers reimburse lenders when homeowners fail to pay their home loans. Genworth and its rivals sold too much of the protection too cheaply during the housing bubble and have since been swamped by record defaults from those policies. The company said it needed to bolster reserves because of "worsening trends in recent experience associated with its U.S. MI business as well as related market trends in an environment of continuing weakness in the U.S. residential real-estate market." Genworth said there was a decline in the number of homeowners who got back on track with mortgage payments after falling behind, in part because of "lower levels of lender loan modifications." Analysts, including Nigel Dally of Morgan Stanley, had warned in recent months that the company may have to add more to the pot of funds set aside to pay mortgage-insurance claims. The company said its international operations had operating income of $105 million to $110 million in the quarter, while its life-insurance segment will report operating income of $145 million to $150 million. -By Erik Holm, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2892; erik.holm@dowjones.com

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